"As charged in the indictment, the defendants fostered a culture of corruption and greed that created an uneven playing field for the biggest sport in the world," said FBI Director James Comey, standing alongside Lynch. "Undisclosed and illegal payments, kickbacks, and bribes became a way of doing business at FIFA."
Sepp Blatter, the Swiss head of FIFA, has not been arrested, but the indictment does include several people who are just below him in the hierarchy of sport's wealthiest body.
FIFA, meanwhile, said that Friday's presidential election would go ahead as planned, with Blatter aiming for a fifth term.
Asian Football Confederation said it supports Blatter's bid for another term, and opposes any move to delay Friday's scheduled elections.
But UEFA, European soccer's powerful governing body — whose president Michel Platini has been a vocal critic of Blatter — subsequently called for those elections to be postponed. UEFA indicated that its representatives could boycott the congress altogether.
Greg Dyke, chairman of the English Football Association, said he was unconvinced by Blatter's declaration that FIFA can regain the trust of soccer fans by stepping up efforts to root out corruption.
"I think the time has come where the damage this has done to FIFA is so great that it can't be re-built while Blatter is there so UEFA has got to try to force him out," said Dyke.FIFA also ruled out a revote of the World Cups won by Russia in 2018 and Qatar in 2022.
The Swiss prosecutors' office said in a statement that they seized “electronic data and documents” at FIFA's headquarters on Wednesday as part of their probe. And Swiss police said they will question 10 FIFA executive committee members who took part in the World Cup votes in December 2010.
The Swiss investigation against “persons unknown on suspicion of criminal mismanagement and of money laundering” again throws into the doubt the integrity of the voting.
“FIFA is fully cooperating with the investigation and is supporting the collection of evidence in this regard,” the organization said in a statement.
"This is a difficult time for football, the fans and for FIFA as an organization," Blatter said in a subsequent press release. "We understand the disappointment that many have expressed and I know that the events of today will impact the way in which many people view us.
His statement went on to say that as "unfortunate as these events are, it should be clear that we welcome the actions and the investigations by the U.S. and Swiss authorities and believe that it will help to reinforce measures that FIFA has already taken to root out any wrongdoing in football."
The U.S. Department of Justice said in a statement that two current FIFA vice presidents were among those arrested and indicted: Jeffrey Webb of the Cayman Islands and Eugenio Figueredo of Uruguay. The others are Eduardo Li of Costa Rica, Julio Rocha of Nicaragua, Costas Takkas of Britain, Rafael Esquivel of Venezuela and Jose Maria Marin of Brazil.
All seven are connected with the regional confederations of North and South America and could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted.
Nine of the 14 that were indicted by the Justice Department are soccer officials, while four are sports marketing executives and another works in broadcasting. Jack Warner, a former FIFA vice president from Trinidad and Tobago, was among those indicted. On Wednesday, he surrendered to police and appeared briefly in court, during which a judge read 12 charges against hum and granted Trinidad $2.5 million bail, or US$395,000, with conditions. Police said there was a delay in processing Warner's bail and he would spend one night in a lockup. Before turning himself in, Warner said he had done nothing wrong.
Later on Wednesday, FIFA banned 11 individuals from carrying out "any football-related activities on a national and international level" in response to the indictments.
The Swiss prosecutors' office said the U.S. probe was separate from its investigation but that authorities were working together.
Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko, who is also a FIFA executive committee member, told the Associated Press, “We've got nothing to hide.”
“We're prepared to show everything,” Mutko said in a telephone interview. “We've always acted within the law.”
Qatari soccer officials declined to comment.